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7 Types of Tax-Deductible Home Improvements

With Tax Day approaching, make sure your clients are taking all the home deductions for which they may qualify.Nearly a quarter of homeowners(link is external) say they’re planning major renovations this year, and some of those projects may be eligible for a tax deduction. This could help alleviate some of the high costs of homeownership.Here’s an overview of a few examples of tax-deductible home improvements.  As always, your

Protecting Homes from Extreme Weather

Preventative measures help homeowners mitigate the risks and costs of weather-related damage while increasing sustainability.In recent years, news reports have updated homeowners on climate change and disasters, from hurricanes that cause catastrophic flood and wind damage to snowstorms that lead to ice dams and frozen gutters. Wildfires, hailstorms and drought also top the list of damage-causing disasters. One map from the National Oceanic and A

Slightly More US Mortgages 'Seriously Underwater' as Equity Dwindles

The share of seriously underwater mortgages moved up slightly from 2.6% to 2.7% in Q1, according to a report from Attom released Thursday The share of homeowners in the United States whose mortgages are considered “seriously underwater” ticked up during the first quarter of 2024, according to a new report.The share of seriously underwater mortgages moved up slightly from 2.6 percent to 2.7 percent in the first quarter, according to

More Than 90% of Markets Post Increases Q1

Demand continued to outpace supply in the first quarter, with big gains in some midwestern cities and expensive west coast cities 'roaring back.'More than 9 in 10 metro markets posted home price gains in the first quarter of 2024, according to the National Association of REALTORS®’ latest quarterly report. Of the 221 metro areas tracked, 30% experienced double-digit price gains; that’s up from 15% in the fourth quarter of 2023.During th

U.S. Job Growth Totaled 175,000 in April, While Unemployment Rose to 3.9%

The U.S. economy added fewer jobs than expected in April while the unemployment rate rose, lifting hopes that the Federal Reserve will be able to cut interest rates in the coming months.Nonfarm payrolls increased by 175,000 on the month, below the 240,000 estimate from the Dow Jones consensus, the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday. The unemployment rate ticked higher to 3.9% against expectations it would hold steady

US Labor Costs Rise by Most in a Year as Productivity Cools

US labor costs increased in the first quarter by the most in a year as productivity gains slowed, potentially adding to risks inflation will remain elevated.Unit labor costs, or what a business pays employees to produce one unit of output after taking into account changes in productivity, climbed at a 4.7% annual rate. That marked a notable jump after muted gains in the second half of 2023.Productivity, or nonfarm employee output per hour, rose

Mortgage Rates Surge to a New 2024 High

Home buyers are readjusting their budgets, realizing that borrowing costs are unlikely to move down anytime soon.Mortgage rates continued to climb for the fifth consecutive week, reaching a 7.22% average and a new high for 2024, Freddie Mac reported Thursday. The last time rates rose this high was in November 2023.“Mortgage interest rates are unlikely to move down soon, especially in light of yesterday’s Federal Reserve announcement—the Fed

Home Prices Soar Even Higher in February, Despite Higher Mortgage Rates

Strong demand and tight supply continue to push home values higher, even though mortgage rates are now moving higher again.Home prices in February jumped 6.4% year over year, another increase after the prior month’s annual gain of 6%, according to the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller national home price index released Tuesday. It was the fastest rate of price growth since November 2022.The 10-city composite rose 8%, up from a 7.4% increase in the

Mortgage Demand Drops as Interest Rates Soar Over 7%

Mortgage rates rose for the third straight week last week, hitting the highest level since November. As a result, mortgage application demand dropped 2.7% compared with the previous week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s seasonally adjusted index.The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($766,550 or less) increased to 7.24% from 7.13%, with points increasing to 0.66 from 0.